In the world of professional basketball, the pursuit of an NBA championship is the ultimate goal for every player and team. For the Los Angeles Clippers, the mission remains clear: winning an NBA championship. Their star players, Paul George and Kawhi Leonard, have been instrumental in carrying this vision forward, but the road to glory has not been without its challenges.
A Shift in Mindset and Intensity
Two years ago, Paul George began contemplating the legacy he would leave behind in the NBA. The birth of his son reinforced his desire to be remembered as a champion, inspiring a shift in mindset. The Clippers’ training camp this season, unlike the past, was marked by intense focus and determination.
"Night-and-day different, just in terms of intensity at training camp," observed guard Norman Powell.
The team has not taken last season lightly, but they recognized that certain cracks in their foundation had compromised their performance. The focus had shifted from the regular season to the playoffs, and it was a mistake they vowed not to repeat.
Health and Championship Ambitions
Paul George, now in his 14th season, has yet to secure an NBA championship, and he is determined to change that narrative. His career has been marred by injuries, and his legacy remains incomplete without an NBA title.
"My legacy here is just haven’t been able to finish," George admitted. "I think in a lot of ways, injury-prone, inability to finish. So can’t even say that… I never go into a summer like, ‘Hey, what do I need to work on to get better.’"
However, this season, things are different. George and Leonard have begun the season healthy, and their focus has shifted towards the months of work that precede the playoffs.
"Last year when we were in the same spot, we were talking about like, ‘We’re the favorite,’ and they’re not really talking about us that way this year," noted forward Nicolas Batum.
James Harden: A Potential Addition
The Clippers remain committed to their championship ambitions, but questions about the roster’s fit and scheme persist. The potential addition of James Harden, who has expressed interest in joining the Clippers, raises intriguing questions about how he would fit into the team’s playing style.
"I don’t think they need that, but it would add talent," says former Clippers coach Doc Rivers, who coached Harden last season. "Adding talent doesn’t always just do it, if you know what I mean."
While the fit and scheme are valid concerns, the ultimate factor that will determine the Clippers’ success is their health. As Rivers pointed out, "It’s not like this is a trick question; they have to play."
The Legacy and the Quest for Championship
As time passes, the urgency to secure a championship is evident, especially for Paul George, who aspires to be called a champion.
"I haven’t won nothing, you know what I mean?" George said. "And I’m not satisfied with that… I’m pretty laser-focused."
The Clippers are prepared to give it their all in pursuit of their championship dream, with or without James Harden. The positive atmosphere in the training camp, the focus on the regular season, and the determination to stay healthy have set the stage for a compelling season.
This season, the Clippers are indeed ‘laser-focused’ on winning.
The Clippers’ Unwavering Focus on Winning the NBA Championship
Is James Harden on the Clippers?
Why does James Harden have a beard?
James Harden’s iconic beard has become synonymous with the NBA superstar, but the story behind it has its roots in his college days. When Harden first set foot on campus, he decided to grow a small beard, a style reminiscent of Bill Walton’s chinstrap beard. His college teammate, Roberson, humorously recalls that Harden began growing his beard after seeing Roberson’s facial hair coming in.
- The Beard Battle: Roberson playfully suggests, "To be truthful, I think he started growing a beard because he saw mine coming in and he got hair on his face. He won’t say that’s what it was, but he won that battle."
While it may have started as a lighthearted competition, James Harden’s beard has since become an iconic part of his identity and a symbol of his remarkable basketball career.
What team is the Clippers in the NBA?
The Los Angeles Clippers are an American professional basketball team located in Los Angeles. They are a member of the National Basketball Association (NBA) and compete in the Western Conference. As one of the NBA’s franchises, the Clippers represent the city of Los Angeles in the world of professional basketball, vying for success in the Western Conference.
Why is James Harden special?
At the age of 34, James Harden continues to be an exceptionally influential scorer and playmaker. Notably, he led the NBA in assists per game during the previous season and played a pivotal part in Joel Embiid’s achievement of his first MVP award. Surprisingly, despite his remarkable skills and contributions, the trade market for James Harden this summer was remarkably limited.
Why is Harden’s beard so big?
James Harden’s distinctive beard is the result of a simple choice—he just didn’t feel like shaving. As a consequence, his beard began to grow in earnest. Much like the biblical figure Sampson, whose strength was linked to his long hair, Harden’s beard seemed to coincide with an upsurge in his basketball prowess, taking his game to a whole new level.
Why are NBA players hairless?
Baldness among NBA players can be attributed to a combination of factors, including genetics and stress. For some, as their hair begins to thin and create patchy scalps, the choice to shave their heads completely becomes a practical solution. Opting for a shaved head simplifies their grooming routine, especially while on the road, making it easy to maintain with the use of a quality razor and products like HeadSlick Shave Cream.